TTC history

This is what the TTC looked like in the 1950's and 60's

As far as archival photos of Toronto go, those that depict the early days of the TTC are among my favourites. In fact, tracking the transformation of surface vehicles from horse-drawn trolleys to electric streetcars to fishbowl buses was one of the most entertaining aspects of our decade-by-decade historical photo series.

What's somewhat strange, however, is that with the exception of the entry for the 1950s, the series doesn't include a whole lot of photos of the subway system. 

These aren't particularly hard to find. Both the TTC and Eric Trussler fonds at the Toronto Archives are a plentiful resource of scanned photo negatives.

Trussler was a professional photographer whose main client was the TTC, so he's responsible for a large chunk of the documentation of the early subway system.

One of the things that so interesting about Trussler's images of the subway stations themselves is that he often overexposes them ever so slightly. These high-tone photos make the system look absolutely pristine, and in some cases they give it an almost "space-age" look (particularly those bereft of passengers).

So this little exercise is more aesthetic than it is historical. For more information about the history of the TTC, check out Transit Toronto's ample work in this area.

The first group of these images date back to the beginning of the Yonge Line (opened in 1954), and the remainder derive from the opening of the University and Danforth Lines in 1963 and 1966 respectively.

TTC history

Off the boat 1953

2011318-Subway-1953s0381_fl0236_id10434-4.jpg

Subway Car 1953

TTC history

Interior 1953

TTC history

The First Run 1953

TTC history

Eglinton Station 1954

TTC history

King Station 1954

TTC history

Ticket Booths 1954

TTC history

Eglinton Station 1961

TTC history

St. Clair Station 1961

TTC history

Eglinton Station 1962, Duplex Exit (now gone)

TTC history

Museum Station Entrance 1963

TTC history

Museum Station 1963

TTC history

Queen's Park 1963

TTC history

St. George Station 1963

TTC history

St. Patrick Station 1963

TTC history

Near Castle Frank Station, mid 1960s

TTC history

Between Old Mill and Royal York stations, mid 1960s

TTC history

Bay Station 1966

TTC history

Bay Station 1966

TTC history

Bloor Station 1966

TTC history

Yonge 1966

TTC history

Bloor/Yonge Station Entrance 1966

TTC history

St. George Station 1966

Lead photo by

Toronto Archives. With files from Derek Flack.


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